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CO2 reduction

5 key challenges that the

business needs to consider
by Adrian Arvunescu


This is but a brief outline of how I think

we should think about the problem

Problem 1
Problem 2
Problem 3
Problem 4
Problem 5

Real agenda, sorry



Because business is central to everything







CO2 is a hot topic today

Carbon dioxide is the
primary greenhouse gas
emitted through human
It is also a key indicator of
consumption of all other
kinds of resources.

In both ways, CO2 is the chief driver of

climate change
the single greatest danger facing
humanity in all history

Even worse than aliens invasion!!

and WW3


How come?

CO2 is naturally present in the atmosphere as

part of carbon cycle.
Human activities are altering the carbon cycle by
adding more CO2 and by disturbing natural sinks,
like forests, from removing the CO2

While CO2 comes from a variety of natural sources,

anthropic emissions are responsible for the increase since
the industrial revolution.

The main human activity

that emits CO2 is
combustion of fossil fuels
(coal, natural gas, oil) for
energy and transportation

The increase in CO2 emissions corresponds

with increased energy use by expanding
economy and population, and an overall
growth in emissions from electricity generation.

Industrialised nations are looking to reduce their

CO2 emissions by as much as 50% or more by 2050.

Governments and industries must implement an unprecedented

global program to change way the world produces&uses energy
There is no single technology or strategy that can solve the
climate change crisis while assuring continued economic growth,
during the transition to a more carbon neutral world economy.

Transport is the only major sector in the EU

where greenhouse gas emissions are still rising

by 23% (1990 2010)

Without the economic downturn it could have
been even worse

Problem number 1

Cars are responsible for 12% total EU emissions

While its true that engines get steadily better at using fuel,
people have responded by buying more fuel-hungry cars.

Improvements in engine
efficiency over the decades
have been offset by the trend
toward larger vehicles (SUVs),
increased use of air
conditioning, electronic control
components demanding greater
weight and power input, ageing
of the car fleet, and
compromises required to reduce
air pollution.

New US passenger
automobile fleet:



average fuel economy


average horsepower


average kerb weight


light trucks out of total



Hybrid vehicles have hit the market amid a flurry

of marketing hype around fuel efficiencies,
promising that youll only have to visit a petrol
station once a year or less.

However, at the launch of the new-generation

Toyota Prius, chief engineer Akihiko Otsuka
admitted the company had opted for a bigger,
more powerful engine because customers had
demanded it...

The world record for vehicle fuel efficiency has

already been set for all time by the bicycle,
which has infinite efficiency since it requires no
fuel at all.

Quite simply, motorists who find riding a bike

unattractive are unlikely to be attracted to these
ultra-efficient vehicles for much the same reasons.

Vehicle efficiency improvements in Europe are

commonly held up as an example, but this ignores that
the trend toward smaller vehicles predates the
development of aggressive standards (helping make
those standards politically palatable),

also owes to Europe's high fuel prices, greater respect

and provision for public and non-motorised transport,
and closer settlement patterns.

According to a 2012 report to the European

Commission, about a third of the registered
CO2 emission reductions from new cars
(2002 2010) have not actually occurred.

It appears instead that flawed test procedures

and flexibilities in these procedures have been
exploited by carmakers to produce laboratory
fuel efficiency figures about 30% more
optimistic than drivers will achieve in reality.

Its not just about CO2

Catalytic converters found in todays cars, while
reducing some emissions from unburnt fuel in
the exhaust, also increase emissions of some
chemicals like nitrous oxide (N2O) which act as
local pollutants and also happen to be potent
greenhouse gases.
Emissions of CO, NOx (heart disease), PM, HC
(cancer, smog) fail to be addressed by the
obsessive focus on CO2 only


So, the first challenge is:

The problem is not clearly defined
Because of systemic complexity: too many
factors involved, trends and interactions,
unpredictable events and poorly researched
phenomena etc.
Additionally, facts are blurred by economic
Customers react chaotically
Manufacturers lack long term vision
please excuse the euphemism!

Problem number 2
The world's car fleet is set to triple by 2050 to
two billion with 80% coming from rapidly
industrialising nations like India that currently
do not have fuel economy rules.
CO2 output is
projected to
double to six
gigatons if it
follows its
current path.

The fleet average to be achieved by all new cars

130 g/km by 2015 and 95 g/km by 2021
(4.1 l/100 km petrol or 3.6 l/100 km diesel)
A kilogram of carbon, whether contained in
petrol, diesel, kerosene, natural
gas, LPG, biofuel, burns to 3.6 kg CO2.
Petrol emits 2.3 kg/l of CO2; since diesel is more
energy dense per unit volume, it emits 2.6 kg/l

Is Diesel greener ?

The figures do not include CO2 emissions
created during the drilling, pumping,
transportation and refining steps required to
produce the fuel.

Complex filtres and catalytic systems increase

production costs and lifecycle maintenance for
the customer add more CO2 to build them.

The most efficient machines for converting energy to

rotary motion are electric motors, as used in electric
vehicles. Pollution produced from centralised generation
of electricity is emitted at a distant power station.

Some railways, such as the French SNCF use almost

100% of their power from hydroelectric and nuclear
power stations, atmospheric pollution from their rail
networks is very low.

Hydrogen cars may become commercially

available. Powered either through chemical
reactions in a fuel cell that create electricity to
drive very efficient electrical motors or by
directly burning hydrogen in a combustion
engine (similarly compatible with natural gas
and petrol).
Conventional technological improvements for
petrol engines continue to be far more effective
than alternatives

Regulation in inherently limited

Is purely for manufacturers

Only applies to new cars
Vehicle taxed at country level
Doesnt mind the gap
No one size fits all solution
Vans and lorries are a different story
Solutions are tailored for Western countries
No synergy with infrastructure, urbanism,
employment (i.e. does not improve system
performance by making traffic better)

Which highlights the 2nd challenge

The problem is not well integrated
Lack of a systemic approach
Solutions are available, but business lacks the
will/incentive to pursue them
Inefficient/insufficient regulation
Fear not to distort competition has to be
Policy is no longer ideology, but management

Problem number 3
Increasing the
efficiency of a car
is a lesson in
physics... and
Only 15% of the
energy from the
fuel gets used to
move your car
down the road

Reducing Wind Drag: through exterior design

However, people wont buy an unattractive
looking car merely for the sake of
Some would be reluctant to swap to smaller
cars for the loss of comfort, functionality and
Will reach some practical limit by 2015-2020

Engine Technologies: increase the overall

efficiency of the combustion process
Or to recycle the heat
Improve engine peak efficiency potential
Reduce losses at light load from throttling
Higher compression ratio
Improve driveability (!)
parking assistance, electric steering, parktronic
systems, cameras, manoeuvrability, increase

Reduce Friction in the moving parts in a car:

drivetrain, transmission
Low viscosity 5W-20 synthetic oils with
molybdenum based friction modifier additive
More study on long term wear, also impact of
cold climate
Tyres and oil replacement market is not well
optimised for fuel economy.

Decrease Weight: incorporate lighter materials

such as carbon fibre, aluminium, HSLA,
composites into the car's design
Loremo - the leanest car in the world, that was
suppose to take 1l/100 km
at some 10.000 Euros
never made it to market
Hopefully, upon many manufacturers adopting
revolutionary materials, competition would drive
prices down

Solutions do exist!
Variable Valve Timing
and Lift
Cylinder Deactivation
Direct injection
stratified charge
Integrated Starter /
Automated manual
Regenerative braking

Cam-less valve actuation

Intelligent ECU software
42V electrical systems
Adaptive cruise control
Fast engine warm-up
Tyre rolling resistance
Improved roof insulation

Also in terms of policy

Limit value curve

Penalty for excess emissions
Super credits
Voluntary agreements
Targets for smaller manufacturers
Driver training programmes, fuel-efficient driving
2 Gt CO2, 6 billion barrels of oil and $600 billion in fuel
costs could be saved without radical reengineering =
half consumed and emitted by cars in the EU today.

Some technologies might be able

to mind the gap!
Electric oil and water pumps, energy efficient
alternators, heat batteries (for pre-warming
engine oil on start up) and 5W-20 oil. Under
cold ambient, dense traffic conditions, this
combination could increase fuel economy by
10% and up to 20% during winter.
Not included in most vehicles is due to their
limited benefit on the fuel economy test cycle.

Technology cost/effectiveness = time required to

pay for the technology cost from the fuel
savings. Measures consumers willingness to
purchase the technology (manufacturers
determine if its worth to put it the on vehicles)
Few technologies are cost effective under all
climatic and traffic conditions.
Given that many technologies show much better
cost-effectiveness on a social (CO2-reduction)
rather than private basis, this suggests
government policies are needed to bring these
technologies into greater use.

Its already a marketing brand

GM goes green right!

3. Problem is not attractive enough

Natural consequence of its not being properly
defined and approached
Marketed by manufacturers to their own
Its such a pity that we need rely on market
forces, rather than subject them by technology
Improved urban performance clashes with public
Small cars clash on EVs etc.


Happier people
Better business

Less compliance
effort for industry


But how?
NGOs, think-tanks
and stuff, media
Education makes
society more aware

Its a great time to be(come) alive!

Drop boring questions like is there too
much or too little regulation
It is an unique issue, that should not be
treated like we are used to classical
Unlike equations or riddles, more like
preventing cancer

Buying green tags and carbon offsets is

only part of the solution to global warming.
Avoid speeding, sport outside the road
Cut out short car trips, shop online
Maintain your car
Remove unnecessary weight
Inflate your tyres properly
Idling is 0 miles per gallon
Disabuse aircon
Use public transport wherever possible
Telecommute, carpool, plan, walk

Maintain a safe following distance!

Fill up halfway rather than full tank
Use adequate gear ratio
Watch and predict traffic signals
Avoid congestion (!)
Improve parking skills
Take more left turns
Mind the computer display
Dont pump Premium
Switch to 4 day work week
Have beer more often

Quick recap before number 5

1. Because of the irreducible overall
complexity of human, economic, natural
factors and global implications, the problem
of CO2 emissions cannot be dealt by policy
makers alone.
2. As the science behind it is still not well
understood, appropriate technology is yet
to be developed. Business practices should
follow suite.

3. Awareness and education shyly make

a start in shaping some patterns here
and there.
4. Reducing CO2 is nothing like
defeating communism
fighting AIDS
or space conquest
not even eradicating poverty and war

On the other hand, maybe we really are doomed.
After all, death is also part of life.
Why should we think everything is to be conquered?
Human nature might not be that flexible after all
But nothing prevents us from learning a valuable lesson!
We might not save humanity or change the future a bit,
but we can make a better world today!

The final challenge!

Is facing oneself
Being responsible is its own reward
Facing problems is what makes us human
And better people
Solving is, after all, the definition of intelligence
Its immature to hope all problems would end
Always fixed by someone else

Why were there dots at the last bullet point?

You figure out yourself!

Closing statement
CO2 is big

Too big for politics

(challenge 1)
Too big for industry
(challenge 2)
Too big for population?
(challenge 3)
Hopefully not too big for joint effort (challenge 4)
Definitely not too big to make a difference! (chl.5)